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Premature Rejection: The Fourth Estate And Roy Hodgson

Once the announcement had been made, they acted with admirable speed. It took just two days from an announcement appearing on the Football Association’s website on Sunday afternoon for an interview to be held and, this afternoon, a press conference to follow confirming that Roy Hodgson is the new manager of the England national football…

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May 2, 2012

Roy Hodgson… England Manager?

The timing was just right for tomorrow morning’s newspapers, but the name isn’t the one that most had expected to see at the top of their short-list. Earlier this evening, a statement appeared on the Football Association’s website confirming that they have made a formal approach to West Bromwich Albion to speak to Roy Hodgson…

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April 29, 2012

European Championship Stories: 1996 – A Whole New Ball Game

It almost goes without saying that the near-death – and very much beyond – experiences suffered by English football during the 1980s shaped the game that we watch today. There was a time – a period from the middle to the end of that decade – when the definite feeling that this was a game on its…

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March 28, 2012

Hope & Despair, Or, Why Stuart Pearce Cannot Succeed As The England Manager

Amid all the bluster about Englands match against the Netherlands last night (a match already being described by some as “That Thing That Happened At Wembley”), Mark Critchley thinks that he may have spotted the real reason why Stuart Pearce cannot succeed as the England manager.

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March 1, 2012

Scott Parker Versus The World

We live in polarised times. Rather than opening people up to new worlds and new experiences, the internet has allowed us to retreat into tiny enclaves of people who feel the same as we do and draw up the barricades. There is little room for subtlety or nuance in our debates any more, since the…

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February 29, 2012

European Championship Stories: 1980 – The Decline & Fall Of English Football

On the twelfth of June 1980, England played Belgium in the finals of the European Championships – their first match in the finals of a major tournament for ten years. It turned out to be a match that acted as a barometer for the state of the game in England in several different respects, and none…

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February 20, 2012

Fabio Capello Was The Least Of England’s Intractable Problems

Welcome to English football in 2012. The captain of the national team faces a criminal charge for the use of racially aggravated abuse during a Premier League match. Five months after the event, the FA announce that this player will be stripped of the captaincy without, it would appear, having consulted the manager.

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February 9, 2012
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